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Clinical Audit Platform for Students (CAPS): a pilot study

Abstract

Background A clinical audit measures specific clinical outcomes or processes against a predefined standard. However, many clinicians are unable to carry out audits given their time constraints. Alternatively, medical students may often wish to complete audits early in their career to strengthen their portfolios. As such, the student clinical audit platform was designed to connect willing supervisors and these medical students.

Methods Project supervisors were members of a regional trainee-led network. Interested students were familiarised with the various aspects of an audit and allocated to supervisors with similar interests. There was regular communication to track progress and anonymised feedback forms were distributed to all students and supervisors after a year.

Results A total of 17 responses were received from the 19 students who were involved in a project. Based on a 5-point Likert scale, students displayed a mean improvement in their understanding of a clinical audit (1.18±1.07, p<0.001), the confidence to approach a supervisor (1.29±1.21, p<0.001) and the ability to conduct an audit by themselves in the future (1.77±1.15, p<0.001). Of the seven affiliated supervisors, five provided feedback with 80% indicating they had projects which remained inactive and all happy with the quality of work produced by their students.

Conclusion Despite limitations to this programme, the platform produced projects which were disseminated both locally and nationally, demonstrating positive collaboration between medical students and clinicians. We present our findings and evaluations to encourage similar audit platforms to be adopted at other locations.

  • Medical education & training
  • Health services administration & management
  • Clinical audit
  • Quality in health care

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